President Ilir Meta has slammed the committee of inquiry established to dismiss him, arguing that it violates the Constitution.
In a letter sent to Speaker of Parliament Gramoz Ruçi on Tuesday, Meta urged him to take the necessary steps to dissolve the committee, which convened again today to advance their work toward their final report. The report is expected to propose to Parliament to dismiss the President for violating the Constitution.
The Socialist majority in the Albanian parliament initiated the process for Meta’s dismissal immediately after the April 25 elections. A committee of inquiry was set up and instructed to prepare a report in just 3 weeks, so that the Parliament could dismiss Meta before its dissolution.
In his letter today, the President listed a number of arguments on why he considers the committee of inquiry to be illegitimate, in violation of the Constitution and the law, and a product of fictitious parliamentary activity.
While the Constitution bans Parliament from establishing such committees 4 months before the end of its current mandate, the ruling Socialist majority set up the committee in question only one day before this deadline, on May 8. Meta argued that the constitutional requirement against establishing such parliamentary committees also means that they cannot operate during said period.
He explained that committees of this kind are meant to empower the minority in parliament and enable them, and the majority, to place checks on the government. The President noted that no such committee was ever established to investigate accusations of vote rigging, collusion with organized crime and rampant corruption levied by against the government of Prime Minister Edi Rama.
No direct or indirect reference has been made so far by the Parliament or the committee over which articles of the Constitution the President is suspected to have breached, he remarked.
He blasted the initiative for violating the spirit of the law because it was allegedly established hastily, and with the clear political objective of dismissing the President rather than inquiring into his activity.
Meta further accused the Socialist majority of having total control over political power in the country, apart from his office, which allegedly they have repeatedly tried to bring under their control.
Such initiatives are “unacceptable for democratic societies, they are considered acts of revenge, and even institutional coups or ‘coup d’etat’ aimed at capturing constitutional institutions, which in this case it’s what is being attempted against the institution of the President of the Republic,” Meta stressed.
He added that the current parliament lacks an opposition, which further diminishes its legitimacy and that of the committee of inquiry.
Meta remarked that the legitimacy of the current Parliament is limited after the April 25 elections, and that it cannot inquire into any institution during this transitory period until the new parliament is convened in September.
The Socialist initiative to dismiss him is just a distraction from the electoral crimes orchestrated by the Socialist Party, he claimed, while the opposition has filed a number of reports with the Prosecutor’s Office and the Central Election Commission is reviewing the filed complaints.
The head of the committee, Socialist MP Alket Hyseni, responded that the parliament is legitimate, while Socialist MP Spartak Braho said the President’s remarks on the parliament’s legitimacy amounted to a coup d’etat.
The committee gave the President 6 days to appear in a hearing before them.